Experience Japan’s remarkable winter festivals, travelling from Sapporo to Otaru, Asahikawa and Soun
Be entranced by winter in Japan. Experience the sensational Sapporo Snow Festival, be awestruck by the size of snow sculptures and watch the soft lantern light cast its magic over festivalgoers in Otaru. Experience some of the best and biggest winter festivals in the country! Explore picturesque landscapes, don some snowshoes for a wintery walk and sample some of the region’s finest beers and sakes as you enjoy an adventure of natural, cultural and artistic delights that celebrates the splendour of Japan’s far north.
Winter is a beautiful time of year to explore Japan. The streets are lit up and blanketed in snow, the markets are bustling and the food is piping hot
Explore the unique region of Hokkaido in a relatively short period of time
The Sapporo Ice and Snow Festival is world famous for its huge and elaborate sculptures. Make sure you get your camera out, as this is a haven for photographers
Warm up with visits to some of Japan's best-known breweries and whiskey distilleries
The picturesque Snow Light Path Festival in Otaru is a true winter experience. Stroll along the river, gathering around snow mounds filled with light. You might like to enjoy a mulled wine, too
It gets very cold in Japan at this time of year (well below zero), so it's important to bring warm clothes (base layers, coat, hat, scarf etc) and sturdy shoes suitable for ice and snow.
Public transport is the most efficient way of traversing the country of Japan, so you'll be rubbing shoulders with the public. This is a great opportunity to meet some locals. Please note that while transport between destinations and to included activities is part of the cost of your trip, any optional activities and independent exploration you choose to do will be at your own expense.
Even though the itinerary is quite full, you'll still have free time to make the most of your winter escape.
The festivals attended on this adventure can be extremely busy so be prepared for some crowds at peak times.
With the low unemployment rate in Japan, your tour leader may either be a local Japanese or a foreign long term resident in Japan.
This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 January 2018 to 31 December 2018. View the itinerary for departures between 01 January 2017 - 31 December 2017
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There are currently no scheduled departures on our Japan Winter Festivals trip. If you are interested in other trips in the region visit one of the links below.
1. A Single Supplement is currently not available for this trip due to limited rooms at many of our properties.
2. This itinerary is far from a hand-holding, all inclusive trip, so enjoy the freedom of discovering Japan, with the guidance of expert advice on how to spend your time from your leader.
3. This trip does not include a Japan Rail Pass. You will need to buy your own train tickets for any independent rail travel you wish to do in Japan.
4. Due to the high demand for accommodations during the winter festivals, we'll stay in hotels on this trip instead of Ryokans.
5. With the low unemployment rate in Japan, your tour leader may either be a local Japanese or a foreign long term resident in Japan.
Our Japan Winter Festivals trips score an average of 4.6 out of 5 based on 5 reviews in the last year.